Archive for Canada

UBC LipDub… Not How I Remember UBC!

Posted in Education with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2011 by Jordan

A couple of days ago I received an email with a link attached to it with a caption reading, “Not quite how you remembered it, eh?”  Intrigued by the caption, I clicked the link and watched the corresponding video which was a video created to help University of British Columbia (UBC) students feel a stronger connection to their largely commuter based school.  As a graduate of UBC, I must say I thought the video was pretty well done; however, what I saw in this video is in no way shape or form a reflexion of what I experienced at UBC while obtaining either or my degrees.

It’s very possible that the culture of the Point Grey campus has changed since I graduate in 2009 (I hardly doubt it but I am willing to concede that it is possible). I have a lot of memories of my time at UBC but none of them include anything portrayed in this video.

It’s not raining once in this video, which is about as likely at UBC as Kirstie Alley not weighing over 250 lbs.  Furthermore, the people in the video are completely out off character and misrepresented.  There aren’t more than seven white people that actually attend UBC so I’m not sure where all the white people in the video came from, Asian people don’t stand in libraries, they sleep on their calculus textbooks, and the engineers wouldn’t be caught dead near an Arts building due to various pretensions.  To top it all off, students at UBC don’t make eye contact with each other.  They burry their heads, walk into each other, and continue on with their days without saying a word to one other.  I also didn’t see one frat guy aggressively soliciting a student to join their frat, which is odd because I think frats are obsessed with doing that.

Despite all these oversights, the two most obvious aspects missing from this video are that there isn’t one heroin addict mumbling to themselves on the bus and there isn’t one homeless person armpit deep in a garbage can looking for discarded treasures.  How these two aspects were overlooked when making this video about UBC are beyond me.  Interacting with drug addicts and homelessness on a daily basis is an entrenched aspect of life as a UBC student.  I think it would have been pretty cool to see a disheveled mess mumbling to themselves during the scene on the bus or to see a homeless guy with his entire torso in the garbage can outside the Aquatic Center.

Alas, you can’t always get what you want and I’m sure it is very difficult to get drug addicts and homeless people to cooperate with an artistic vision.

Man vs Food vs Reduced Life Expectancy

Posted in Education, Television with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 25, 2011 by Jordan

The technology of television is unbelievably fascinating to me.  When I was a kid watching wrestling in the 80s, TV’s were pieces of furniture that sat on the floor of the living room and weighed about 300 lbs.  Now, TV’s are pieces of art mounted on walls that are no thicker than a Gordon Korman book and weigh about 30 lbs.

 

The evolution of TV’s over the last 20 years is both impressive and remarkable. What’s not impressive and remarkable is how dormant and contradictory TV programming is on a nightly basis.  For example, The Biggest Loser on NBC documents the physical and mental process of morbidly obese individuals as they learn to drastically alter their lifestyles while competing against each other to lose the most weight.  This is both a positive and educational show that most North American’s can actually benefit from.   On the other hand, you can flip to OLN on any given night and find a show called Man vs. Food.  For those that have not seen this show, Man vs. Food basically takes everything positive The Biggest Loser has achieved over the last 10 years and marginalizes it with every 30-minute episode.   Man vs. Food follows a guy named Adam Richman around America as he exhibits unique American comfort food and attempts to complete a nearly impossible food eating challenge.

 

Man vs. Food is everything that is wrong with North America.  It promotes excess, greed and poor manners.  If this guy came over to my place for dinner and talked with his mouths full as he moaned with ecstasy, I would have no choice but to thank him for his awkward compliments and kick him the fuck out of my home.  Adam Richman is 30 lbs away from being the likable chubby guy that showcases food around America to competing on the next season of The Biggest Loser.

 

So basically what I’m trying to say here is The Biggest Loser is like a 50 inch plasma mounted on your wall; while, Man vs. Food is like the TV in my grandma’s basement.  It’s outdated, clunky and uses a rotary dial to change the channel.

Sigh No More Mumford & Sons are Here

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 15, 2010 by Jordan

If you are one of the few that haven’t heard of a band out of England called Mumford & Sons it’s time to crawl out of your cave and get in the now.  Mumford & Sons is in the process of wrapping up a sold out tour of Eastern North America.  Obviously they didn’t stop in Halifax because Halifax focuses it’s concert efforts on attracting the likes of Colin James and Burton Cummings cover bands.  However, Mumford & Sons did make a stop in Toronto on the weekend and all the reviews I’ve read suggest the show at Sound Academy was nothing short of unreal.  In classic Canadian inferiority complex style one review suggested that Mumford & Sons was the English equivalent of Great Big Sea.  This statement would hold true if Mumford & Sons sounded like a gay Christian band with newfie accents that sucked, but they don’t so the comparison is bunk.  Mumford & Sons stopped by the 102.1 Edge studio while in Toronto to play a couple tunes which apparently created a greater buzz then when U2 stopped by a couple of years ago.

If you haven’t had a chance to listen to any of Mumford & Sons tracks go download the album for like 9 bucks.  It’s called Sigh No More and will explore all your emotions except the desire to be a juice monkey or douche bag.  Here’s a sample from their session at the Edge studio.

The Man, The Myth, The Gemini Award Winner

Posted in Television with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 14, 2010 by Jordan

It’s rare that you can drink alone and not feel like an alcoholic but as of right now I am experiencing one of those rare moments.  Less then an hour ago faithful Whole Ball of Wax reader and all round great guy Jared Keeso won the Gemini Award for his outstanding performance as Don Cherry in Keep Your Head Up Kids: The Don Cherry Story.  In addition, Benjamin Arthur (who is also an all round great guy) won the Gemini for his role in the T.V. show Less Than Kind.  Due to this great news, I am going to proceed to drink until I fall asleep on the couch and spill my beer on my crotch.

By no means do I have an acute knowledge of the Canadian film industry, but I have spent enough time with these two individuals to recognize and appreciate the amount of effort and commitment that goes into being an actor in Canada.  Not always the most glamorous of lifestyles, both Jared and Ben have made substantial sacrifices as they continuously strive to perfect their art.  The nature of the Canadian film industry probably means that the last minute notice for auditions won’t stop for either of these guys but tonight they can take solace in the fact that they are among the best at what they do in the entire country.  There are very few Canadians that can say they are the best in Canada at what they do and because of this rarity The Whole Ball of Wax wishes to congratulate both Jared and Ben for their truly outstanding accomplishments tonight.

A Month to Movember

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , on November 1, 2010 by Jordan

I’m sure you all know that the month of November no longer exists and that it has been replaced by the month of Movember.  For those that are unfamiliar with Movember let me clarify that the month formally known as November is a month dedicated to growing a mustache as a means of creating awareness and funds for men’s health issues (particularly prostate cancer).  The great mustache growing campaign began as a grassroots movement in Australia in the early 2000s with just 30 Mo Bros participating and has since spread worldwide accumulating almost 700,000 Mo Bros and Mo Sistas.

 

I’ve grown many beards and mos (Australian slang for mustache) for pleasure in my day but have never grown a mo for a cause.  As this is my first Movember campaign, I encourage all able Bros and Sistas with a little French in them to neglect their upper lips for the month and see if we can’t drum up some awareness and funds for men’s health issues in Canada.

 

I will post a picture of my upper lip follicles in action everyday for all readers to see the Tom Selleck in me.  You will be able to check my daily mo progress by clicking on the Movember topic in the side bar.

 

Should anyway have some spare change to donate after a very busy fundraising October and desire to donate to the Movember cause, you can donate to me or my team by clicking on the link below and typing either my name or my team’s name (edustache) in the Search Box.

 

http://ca.movember.com/donate/find-member/

 

Remember, with great mustache comes great responsibility so lets all do our part.

 

Commonwealth Gamezzzzzzzzz

Posted in Sports with tags , , , , on October 18, 2010 by Jordan

I read an article last week on tsn.ca stating that Canadian summer athletics had taken a giant step backwards after being pushed from the overall medal podium at the Commonwealth Games by host India.  Apparently this was the first time in 48 years Canada failed to finish in the toppppppppppzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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Oh I’m sorry I fell asleep attempting to give a shit about the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.  Never has there been an athletic spectacle that is a bigger waste of money then the Commonwealth Games.  I am an avid supporter of Canadian athletics and love watching Canadian’s compete in international competitions but any two week athletic competition involving summer sports where Canada contends to be one of the top three nations participating loses it’s legitimacy as a reputable international competition.  This is just my opinion but I have never been as uninterested in an international sporting event as I was for the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India.

Note the outstanding crowds in the photo provided.

God Save the Queen

Posted in History, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 2, 2010 by Jordan

With the Queen in the middle of her 22nd official visit to Canada I have found myself caught up in the Royal hoopla.  She made her first visit to Nova Scotia in 16 years and I even caught a glimpse of her majesty through binoculars as she sailed pasted my office building amidst the international fleet review. I could tell it was her because she was the only person on the ship wearing white and her hat had a big white flower on it.  Also, I could easily tell which person was Stephen Harper because his onion loaf coif danced rather majestically as it was tossed about by the sea breeze.

I’m not sure why but I have always been an advocate for the royals and for the Queen’s role as the Head of State for Canada.  I look at the Queen and I see the epitome of elegance and grace.  She’s a complete geezer yet she sucked it up when the rain came in sideways upon her arrival to Halifax, she didn’t hesitate to walk through a soggy field to look at teepees, nor did she waver when taught how to play a native game that looked ridiculous.  She rarely smiles but always says the right things that make Canadians feel good about themselves and to top it all off she looked radiant in her red dress and white hat on Canada Day.

Despite all this there is a less flattering side to the Queen the goes unnoticed.  There is no way the Queen has lived her 84 years without having explosive diarrhea and had an occasion where she barely made it to the “crappie” without pooping herself.  I’m sure she’s even had the odd poop that has left her out of breath and whipping beads of sweat off her forehead, opening windows and spraying Glade Summer Breeze in the air.  There is also no way she hasn’t had a fart that goes drastically up in pitch as it concludes.  She’s probably been so sick she puked her guts out and popped blood vessels in her face. She has probably flossed her teeth and been in need of a blood transfusion afterwards because her gums bled so badly.  She probably shaves her armpits and has had her upper lip waxed (maybe not the upper lip… she’s not French after all).  She’s probably had B.O. at least once.  I guarantee she’s had food stuck in her teeth and no one told her.  She has pretty fancy clothes but I’ll bet she has picked lint out of her belly button and sweaty fuzz from between her toes.  Maybe the Queen has an outty and doesn’t get belly button lint… I don’t know I’m not a doctor.

The list of unflattering things the Queen has done in her life is probably as big as her annual spending habits.  The point is, no matter how elegant and graceful a person is and no matter how high that person is placed on a pedestal by society, everyone has to take a shit at some point in their life and it probably doesn’t smell like freshly baked cinnamon buns.

The “Golden Boy” Lays a “Golden Egg”

Posted in Sports with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 30, 2010 by Jordan

Bush league players making up a bush league team.

Last weekend was the gold medal game for the 2010 Hockey World Championships in Germany.  Canada was not a participant in this game however after exiting the tournament in the quarterfinals with a 5-2 loss to the Russians.  I don’t really understand why Canadians don’t seem to care about the World Championships but they don’t.  Perhaps it’s because the tournament is rarely in North America or because it is over shadowed by the Stanley Cup playoffs.  I personally feel that it is because Canada sends a combination of the “B” and “C” squad players every year.  Obviously not all the best Canadian players can participate in the tournament depending on their success in the Stanley Cup playoffs.  However, a number of the best Canadian hockey players often forgo participating in the World Championships following their dismissal from the Stanley Cup playoffs with what I would consider very feeble excuses.

Living in “Crosby Land” I witness on a daily basis what an impact “The Messiah” has on this small community.  People that played novice hockey with him reminisce about “the good old days” and people that were at the Cole Harbour Subway at the same time as him once speak of him like they are best friends saying things like, “Sid had a great game last, just great!”  (Obviously because they are from Cole Harbour, they are on a “Sid” name basis with Crosby.)  When Crosby rejected Mark Messier’s offer to join Team Canada in Germany at the World Championships (I wonder if he had the jam to do this himself by the way?), Crosby’s reasoning and the community’s support of Crosby’s decision disappointed and frustrated me immensely.

Crosby declined Messier’s offer sighting that it had been a long two years making it to the Stanley Cup finals back to back years and playing in the Olympics this past February.  One of the local radio stations held a pole asking listeners if Crosby should have gone to the World Championships or not and 85% supported his decision and reasoning not to attend the World Championships.

I want to make one thing clear before I continue; I am not a Crosby hater.  Crosby plays the game right and I have a lot of respect for that.  However, his rejection of the World Championship and reasoning to go along with his rejection is a pathetic and I believe it adds “diva” to the many adjectives used to describe Sidney Crosby.

Canada’s roster at the World Championships had one player on it from the Olympic roster and that was Cory Perry.  The Russians had fourteen players on their roster that were also in the Olympics and among those 14 players were Pavel Datsyuk, Sergie Gonchar and Evgeni Malkin.  Last time I checked all three of these players also played in the same back to back Stanley Cup Finals that Crosby played in.  Even more, in Canada’s 5-2 loss to the Russians that eliminated them from the tournament Datsyuk and Malkin combined for 3 of Russia’s 5 goals.  Do you think Crosby could have been of some help in this game?

People need to remember Crosby is a 23-year-old kid that has not yet come close the Gretzky like greatness.  In my opinion, he has also not earned the right to decline an invitation to help Hockey Canada because he doesn’t feel like playing and would prefer to rest.  He’s 23 years old, in peak physical condition, had no injuries at the time of the invitation and was asked to play in half a tournament.  Consequently, I would say the “Golden Boy” could learn a lot from his Russian colleagues about patriotism and dedication.

So Much More Then Just Rocks!

Posted in Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 20, 2010 by Jordan

Most readers of this blog do not live in Nova Scotia so I will share this little adventure with you.

Recently the LC and I decided to jump in the soccer mom mobile and take a little drive to Peggy’s Cove to breath in some sea air and play on the rocks.  Although we have both been to Peggy’s Cove on a few occasions it is a small little place that I really enjoy and have no problem driving the 45 km from Halifax to get there.

I can’t believe that it hadn’t dawned on me before but Peggy’s Cove has to be one of Canada’s best natural parkour playgrounds.  The rocks around there have “broken foot and ankle” written all over them.  There is actual a sign on the lighthouse saying something to the effect that many people have been rewarded with death when visiting Peggy’s Cove due to foolish behaviour.  The LC and I tossed such warnings out the window and parkoured our asses off until the waves came home.  The LC is pictured leaping over a mighty chasm that surely would have cost her her life had she made any errors.  I can say with joy that the LC survived the experience and lived to parkour another day.

In addition to the picturesque scenery of Peggy’s Cove, is a monument commemorating those who died on Swiss Air 111 in 1998.  Reports indicated that the plane crashed 8 km off Peggy’s Cove while dumping fuel in preparation for an emergency landing in Halifax but many retired RCMP investigators have recently come forward with a conspiracy theory suggesting the crash was a covered up terrorist act.  I’ll leave such speculation up to those who like to speculate on such affairs but 229 people died on that flight and there is a rather nice monument remembering those who perished.

Peggy’s Cove, check it out if you’re in the area.

Political Brainchilds

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 15, 2010 by Jordan

One of my favourite things about politics is when politicians really roll up their sleeves and tackle the pressing issues concerning the nation today.  These issues more often then not require serious collaboration between politicians and political parties.  Lets delve into some of the current issues occupying the time of the leaders of this country.

May 4th was the 100th anniversary of the Canadian Navy and on this day I read an interesting article regarding a number of Canadian politicians that were trying to have the name of the Canadian Navy changed to the “Canadian Navy”.  That’s right, Canadian politicians are debating if the Canadian Navy should be called the Canadian Navy.  This debate actual isn’t as stupid as I’m making it sound.  The Canadian Navy has actually been called the Maritime Command since 1968 believe it or not.  What’s dumber then this debate is that someone thought it was a good idea to call the Navy the Maritime Command.  Everyday I drive past HMC Dockyard in Halifax and on the side of one of the main buildings it says in big red letters “Canada’s East Coast Navy”.  Even if you try to go to the Navy’s website it says “Canadian Navy” not “Maritime Command” on the top of the web page.  Consequently, my response to this debate is two fold.  First, why would someone waste brain energy thinking up an alternate name to Navy?  Second, if everyone (including the Navy) already calls the Maritime Command the Navy anyway, why is there a debate?  Just change the damn name before too many countries find out about our stupid Canadian logic.

This past week I heard on the radio that a few individuals from the Canadian Senate are trying to adopt a national bird.  I found this rather amuzing because if you think about it the American’s have already adopted the king of all birds (the eagle incase you’re an idiot) so any bird Canada adopts is just going to look inferior to the eagle.  Knowing Canadian’s, the bird chosen will likely be the robin so that will only contribute to Canada’s inferiority complex.  I think the only solutions to this debate are for the Senate to tone it down and remember that the Canadian Red Chamber is a joke and a waste of money in it’s present state or for Canada to adopt the pterodactyl as the national bird.  Best Coat of Arms ever!

The last very important point of discussion I have heard politicians talking about recently is Bill Shatner for the next Governor General.  I think this is a great idea!  Canada will become a force to be reckoned with.  Think about it, the feared Canadian Maritime Command, pterodacty coat of arms and Captain Kirk running the show.  I just shit my pants thinking about it.

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